Are you currently drowning in a pile of projects?
While others are struggling to find decent jobs, you’re at the point where work simply comes knocking at your inbox. At first, it feels amazing. You’re finally getting noticed and clients are all wanting to hire you to work with them. Money comes in and you get paid to do something you love.
Until you realize… you’ve accepted more jobs than you can handle. Do you start to panic? Or do you figure out how to properly manage your hours and get shit done before the deadline?
Time management is one of the hardest things to master. At one point, you’re so organized, having everything recorded on your calendar and to-do list. And then, the next thing you know, you’re procrastinating and feeling awful for not being able to accomplish work by the due date.
Now’s not the time to feel sorry for yourself. In this article, I will be helping you manage work properly by using simple tools and a bit of creativity. Listed below are ways you can master your time and manage even the toughest of tasks.
1. Create a Fool-Proof To-do list
To-do lists are perhaps the most popular productivity tools being used today. Everyone must have created a couple of these handy little notes in their lifetime. They’re so easy to do (might even take you less than 5 minutes!) but the real challenge lies in making them effective. If you’re someone whose to-do list ALWAYS becomes a compilation of undone tasks, here’s what you gotta do:
- Add Time-Estimates – Don’t just write off “Create a blog post”. Add the estimated minutes/hours it will take you to finish the task. Don’t try to be overoptimistic. Be honest with what you can achieve with the time you have so you don’t feel overwhelmed from the beginning.
- Create Sections – Don’t just dump in all your task in one column. Separate work from home chores – admin work from important work. That way it’s easier to prioritize and get the most important thing done first.
- Use a Platform That’s Easy to Update – Some people like using pen and paper for their to-do list because they like being crafty. However, if you really want to save time and update everything in one click, I highly recommend using digital tools. There are lots of apps out there to help you, you just have to find what works best.
- Stick to One – And please don’t use multiple to-do notes. Only use one MASTER to-do list for everything. Recording your tasks on various platforms is one way of making everything confusing for you!
2. Schedule Your Day
There’s not much you can accomplish with just a to-do list. If you want to be TRULY productive, you must embrace the power of scheduling your tasks. Your to-do list is simply the place where you define and prioritize your tasks. Whilst your calendar is where you decide when you’re going to complete them. You can list a thousand items on your to-do list but if you have no calendar to help you visualize your day, every effort can turn to waste.
3. Take Breaks
Nothing’s more stressful than knowing you have FIVE articles due the next day. Trust me, I’ve been there. You can easily accomplish it by working non-stop but that’s not going to end up good. You’ll either start to feel really sick of looking at your computer screen or produce poor quality work you won’t be proud of.
The best thing you can do for yourself is to take breaks. Breaks are refreshments for . your brain. After hours of working hard, give your brain some downtime with short relaxations. It could be anything from taking a short walk to a 30-minute nap.
Idleness is not just a vacation, an indulgence or a vice; it is as indispensable to the brain as vitamin D is to the body, and deprived of it we suffer a mental affliction as disfiguring as rickets” – Tim Kreider
4. Stop Multi-tasking
Seriously, stop. The idea that multitasking will help you accomplish more is a long-debunked myth. Study after study shows that multitasking is making you less productive – and what’s even worse, it might be killing your brain!.
I used to be proud of calling myself an “efficient multi-tasker”, even had it listed on my resume as one of my superb skills so employers will be impressed *facepalm*. Not long after I started working have I realized that multitasking simply doesn’t work. If anything, it makes you slower and less productive!
Instead of switching through tasks, work on one project and finish it before proceeding to another. Our brains are designed to focus on one thing at a time, and multitasking is simply slowing us down.
5. Exercise Self- Discipline
Of course, all the tips mentioned above won’t work if you don’t have the drive, the passion, and the self-discipline to succeed. Studies have found that people who have more self-discipline, are generally happier and more successful in life. So whenever the lazy monster kicks in– fight back! Show it that you own your life and that you’re willing to exchange a little inconvenience for a prosperous and happy future!
Do you like this article? Don’t forget to share it with your friends! Also, let me know in the comments what other tips can you give our readers? 🙂